Directional Droplet Transport Mediated by Circular Groove Arrays. Part I: Experimental Findings

Cong Liu, Irina Legchenkova, Libao Han, Wenna Ge, Cunjing Lv, Shile Feng, Edward Bormashenko, Yahua Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Directional transport of liquid droplets is crucial for various applications including water harvesting, anti-icing, and condensation heat transfer. Here, bouncing of water droplets with patterned superhydrophobic surfaces composed of circular equidistant grooves was studied. The directional transport of droplets toward the pole of the grooves was observed. The impact of the Weber number, initial polar distance r, and geometrical parameters of the surface on the directional droplet bouncing was experimentally explored. The nature of bouncing was switched when the Weber numbers exceeded We ∼ 20-25. The rebouncing height was slightly dependent on the initial polar coordinate of the impact point for a fixed We, whereas it grew for We > 20. The weak dependence of the droplet spreading time on the Weber number was close to the dependence predicted by the Hertz bouncing, thus evidencing the negligible influence of viscosity in the process. Change in the scaling exponent describing the dependence of the normalized spreading time on the Weber number was registered for We ∼ 25. The universal dependence of the offset distance ΔL of the droplets on the Weber number ΔL/D0 ∼We1.5 was established. The normalized offset distance decreased with the normalized initial polar distance as ΔL/D0 ∼(r/S)-1, where D0 and S are the droplet diameter and groove width, respectively. This research may yield more insights into droplet bouncing on patterned surfaces and offer more options in directed droplet transportation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9608-9615
Number of pages8
Issue number32
StatePublished - 18 Aug 2020


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